For friends and former co-workers Reggie Yinger and Thad Miller, baseball is more than a game. Baseball is a way of life they inherited from their families at a young age.
"My wife has a T-shirt that says 'baseball widow' on it," Yinger said. "From my childhood, I've just always been a huge baseball fan."
The two connected through their love of the sport a few years ago, and in 2009 they began collaborating on a baseball website, Baseball Press.
Yinger, a Frederick resident, said he had been writing for another site and wanted to create something of his own.
"We decided that between his skills programming and my content, we were going to do our own thing," Yinger said.
The project started small, but Baseball Press has exploded, becoming one of the top baseball sites on the Web. Miller, who lives in Walkersville, said about 700,000 visitors a month used the site last season.
Yinger and Miller said Baseball Press sets itself apart from other sites with its blend of baseball news and information and statistics for fantasy baseball owners. News stories, which are all original content, contain a mix of general and fantasy analysis.
Yinger said his analysis was featured earlier this week in a USA Today baseball preview magazine.
One of their biggest developments came last year when the two created a page featuring up-to-date lineups available hours before game time that allow fantasy owners to update their rosters based on the timeliest information.
They said the lineups have been a huge hit with fantasy baseball enthusiasts. The lineups will soon be out in the form of a smartphone app.
"I can't even describe how excited I was the first time we went to Google and searched for MLB lineups and our page was at the top," Miller said. "If you're a fantasy owner, that's what you need to build your team."
They said they plan to add features to the lineups page, including weather data.
The two computer programmers said the website has become a second job, requiring hours of their time each night.
They said the money they bring in from advertising is used for improvements to the site.
"It's for the fun," Miller said. "If it wasn't fun, we wouldn't be doing it."
But Miller said while the money isn't enough to allow either one of them to make a career of it, he wouldn't rule out the possibility of the website becoming a legitimate income source for Yinger and him in the future.
"Honestly, I never thought we'd be where we are today, but if things continue to grow, then definitely," he said.
"There's no shortage of ideas with us," Yinger added. "It seems like there's only a shortage of time."